It’s a fast-paced life for Hagen

By Amanda Duchsherer
Digital Communication Specialist

MINOT, N.D. – When it was time for Jessica Hagen to transfer from Lake Region State College to a four-year institution for a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, the intimate advising process sold her on Minot State.

“I toured Minot State and it felt really welcoming,” she said. “When I sat down with my advisor, she wanted to get to know me, it was one on one. We went over a plan for graduation step by step versus when I went to the other colleges, you were kind of thrown into a big auditorium and told about the program and they said, this is when you apply, this what you have to do.

“So, I didn’t know if I needed to take anymore gen eds to get into their program. I could have looked them up online, but it was so nice to talk to someone one and one and talk about which classes would benefit me at what time.”

With a clear degree plan in place, Hagen can pursue other endeavors like serving as president of the Nursing Students’ Association of North Dakota (NDSAND), a pre-professional organization representing over a thousand student nurses across the state.

A new friend invited her to a Nursing Student Association (NSA) Minot State Chapter meeting during her first semester at MSU and, before long, she was hooked.

“I liked it, so I was just attending NSA meetings and then I went to a state convention,” Hagen said. “And one of the seniors in the program was on the state board and she nominated me for the social media position, so I was co-director of social media for a year. Then I really, really loved the group, so I decided to run for president in January of this year.”

NSAND provides resources to its members, as well as providing input into the standards on nursing education and a voice to all nursing students in North Dakota.

“We have two advisors, Jaci (Reep-Jarmin, Minot Sate assistant professor of nursing) and Trish Strom from NDSU in Fargo, and it’s really nice to hear their input on things,” she said. “It’s really nice to hear how they deal with this in their program, and how that person deals with that in their program, and how people come together to find a solution.”

In addition to serving as NSAND’s president, Hagen can also be found working in the emergency room at Trinity Health and, during the weekends, for the Lake Region Ambulance in Devils Lake.

“Last summer was the first summer without classes, and I decided to take this EMT class because I was going to be working in the ER. I wanted to learn more about assessments. I took the class May to October and then passed,” she said. “I was going home a lot on the weekends anyway, so I went to our ambulance bay and asked if they had any positions open. They said they had some part-time.”

Hagen fell in love with the work and spent summer 2019 working full-time for the ambulance.

“We do 96-hour shifts. We do four days on, four days off. Some days it was exhausting, we do transfers to Grand Forks and Fargo a lot,” she said. “I know our record four-day shift we did; I want to say 45 calls in four days for our small town.”

The fast pace is something Hagen enjoys and hopes to continue experiencing after graduation in May 2020.

She plans on working at an emergency room before going back to school for critical care nurse and national paramedic certifications.

“I want to fly, so I’ll have my paramedic and nursing degree together,” she said. “I love working in the ER because you never know what’s going to come in next. And it’s so fast-paced moving and you always have to be on top of your game.”

About Minot State University
Minot State University is a public university dedicated to excellence in education, scholarship, and community engagement achieved through rigorous academic experiences, active learning environments, commitment to public service, and a vibrant campus life.

Published: 09/20/19   

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